April 21st, 2012

Accepting credit cards as a small business

What is the easiest and/or cheapest way for a small business to accept credit cards?

What % can be expected to be charged per transaction with different ways of handling them?

If the business already has industry-specific software in place (Spa-Booker - anyone familiar with it?) that handles all the scheduling, accounts, etc. but whose credit card services are taking 8-9%, would it make sense for the business to find another system for POS sales and simply use the software for everything else?

Many thank yous and internets to anyone who can help, doubly so if you know Spa-Booker.
Marley in his bandana

General Q - Flying your cats to another country - Cruel or ?

Hey guys,

This isn't a Portland-specific question but I wanted to toss it out there to see if I could get some info on personal experiences.

I'm a long time Portlander but this year relocated back to Australia (my home) and my two (7 y/o) cats were, much to our devastation, unable to join us due to some quarantine and time constraint issues. Things have fortunately changed and we ARE able to bring them down. They will be fostered for six months with a very, very kind person in LA but.... my sister's making me feel like utter shit at taking the "risk" of flying them all the way to Australia.

Let me impress - part of the reason we decided NOT to originally take them down was because we were indeed very worried about the risk of travel and also the effect it may have on them. Worst case scenarios do include on occasion, pet fatalities and I would hate myself forever if something happened to my animals.

However, they have been languishing in a shelter, unable to find a home(although at least in very good care) and we've had them since they were babies and they would be in a home for the next 5 months and then flown down to Australia, in Quarantine for 30 days here (where we would be able to visit them every week) and then reunited with us.

We're leaning toward using a Pet Freight Company that we've been in contact with who do all the paperwork, crating, shipping, and also transporting to the Aussie Quarantine from their Los Angeles home, and this is something they do regularly.

But I am deeply concerned over the impact the flight may have on them. Does anyone have experience shipping their pet long distance, particularly overseas? Particularly a cat as dogs and cats respond so differently? I realise it may be traumatic but hope that after the trip is said and done they will forget it quickly and bounce forward. But am I kidding myself?

I know lots of people do it but I don't want to do something selfish - as I've been made to feel - and our cats are our priority. That said, languishing in a shelter is also not quality of life when they can be back with us.

So I'm torn and would appreciate anyone's advice/experience. I don't know what happens once they are put in the plane - is it a horrifically noisy compartment, are they treated terribly, etc? I worry that one of my cats (the timid one) may stress herself to death - but perhaps she'll be fine and just eventually settle down and sleep. They are also somewhat resilient creatures.

So any input would be appreciated.

Thanks, DP. x

Lost Chocolate Lab NE Portland

reposted from a friends FB , please keep a lookout, i have their phone number if anyone finds her.

My parent's chocolate lab Bailey is missing! She is dark brown, with a silver collar, and about 65lbs. She's a rescue dog and is scared of everything. She was last seen near my parent's house on 23rd & Fremont in NE Portland. If you are in the neighborhood please keep an eye out for Bailey. Thank you!

Free bunches of porn mags for project?*

Hey DamnPortlanders,

I've got stacks of porn mags I don't know what to do with!  I'm sure I could freelist them, or worst case scenario chuck them, but I wanted to reach out first and see if anyone wanted some for an awesome project or what not.

The Goods:

A lot, stacks and stacks, from my collecting-porn-mags days (ie a few years ago, hah, I studied history and sexuality in school, so it goes).  I can't sell most of them because thanks to a sad housing snafoo they got some mold on the edges or some slight water damage from being outside.  I threw away the ruined ones, but I have stack of them still.  (there's a bunch of them in excellent condition, though, if anyone does want to buy some cheap; esp a lot of specials (blondes, lingerie, etc.).  They're mostly 1980's - 2000's Playboy and Penthouse.  I think I checked once and I literally have the entire 80's of Penthouse.  More soft-focus, softcore photographs than you could ever know what to do with.  They're a great snapshot of the decade, though.

If anyone has a project they'd like some or a bunch of these for, shoot me an email!  sheepgoat@rocketmail.com.

I'm non-sketchy and live in SE.  18 and over only, please.

EDIT: *Or masturbation.
Your whole family is made out of meat -

And Yet More Advice

Since you all solved my pie conundrum, perhaps you can solve my other life dilemmas.

I will be leaving in mid June and will not return to Portland until the end of October. I don't want to pack up all my shit and throw it in storage but I can't afford to keep my apartment here and an apartment in Pennsylvania. And I love my apartment, I would hate to let it go since I will be living in Portland for another 8 months or so upon my return from the midwest. But I'm pretty sure I cannot sublet per my rental agreement and the idea of subletting to a stranger kind of makes me nervous.

Any thoughts or experiences with illegally subletting?

The joys of medical school!